The Google Maps apps has added a new feature that allows you to control music playback while you’re using it. It’s meant for when you’re using the app to guide you to a location and you also want to listen to music. These controls aren’t enabled by default so, even if you have updated the app to the latest version, you may not see the controls. Here’s how you can enable music controls in Google Maps.
Music Controls In Google Maps
Make sure you’ve updated the app to the latest version. This feature is available for both iOS and Android apps.
Open the app, and tap the hamburger icon at the top. On iOS, you ought to see a cog wheel icon at the top of the navigation drawer that opens. On Android, you have to scroll down the navigation drawer, and select Settings.
On the Settings screen, look for and select the Navigation option. On the Navigation screen, you will see a Music Controls option. Tap it and select the service you want to use.
This is where the iOS and Android apps will differ. Google Maps for iOS allows you to connect Apple Music, or Spotify, and play music from either of those two services. If you want to play music from your own library, select Apple Music.
For Android, you need to first enable the ‘Show media playback controls’ option, and then select either Spotify or Google Music to play music from.
The app will play music but pause it each time it needs to announce a turn while it helps you navigate. That’s really the whole point of the feature. You can otherwise play music on your car’s system and use your phone to navigate but it will interrupt your music, or you music will interrupt it.
The concept seems good but we’d rather people drive safe and if you have to use a navigation app to get somewhere, chances are you’re navigating a route you’ve never been on, or that you’re not familiar with enough to remember and you don’t want music distracting you.
This is of course beneficial if you don’t have either Android Auto or CarPlay but again, music happens to take a back seat to safe driving. For Google’s part, it does give users who insist on driving with music playing a better, less distracting way to pause and listen to music so kudos to that. You can’t really knock the feature too hard if it is at least trying to provide a reasonable solution.